Kenyatta University (KU) plays host to the 10th All-Africa University Games which will bring together more than 2000 athletes from various universities across Africa.
The five-day event will see the high learning institutions compete in different disciplines including football, badminton, basketball, table tennis, tennis, volleyball, handball, chess, swimming and taekwondo.
Speaking during the inauguration ceremony on Monday, the first Lady Margaret Kenyatta urged athletes taking part to put their best foot forward, in order to raise their bar.
“You accomplishments over the coming days will inspire us all to strengthen the bonds that unite us and give us the opportunity to enjoy watching you as you display your sporting prowess,” said Mrs Kenyatta who was the chief guest.
She reiterated that in line with this years’ Games theme, 'Use of University Sports as a Tool for Development' is timely saying sports is recognised for its great social significance.
“Sporting activities build character, having been a key feature in keeping our human spirit alive during a crisis. As we embark on re-energizing our continent from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, events such as these Games will serve us well,” she said.
She said the event will go a long way in helping the continental heal from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Initially, the competition was scheduled for 2020, but the pandemic led to its postponement.
The First Lady lauded the organizers for putting up the event at such a time after the country is trying to recover from the pangs of Covid-19.
“Over the next five days, you will compete with each other and at the same time make lasting memories. This is the mission of Federation of Africa University Sports (FASU) to bring us together through the unifying power of sports. I applaud FASU and institutions of higher learning for placing sports central to their learning,” she added.
In attendance was KU Vice Chancellor Paul Wainaina, President of the Federation of African University Sports Nomsa Mahlangu, President of Kenya Universities Sports Federation Mbaabu Muriithi, Acting President of the Federation of International University Sports Leonz Eder.
Nomsa Mahlangu on his part, hailed the institutions for their support and taking part.
"It is a historical moment for us since it is the first time we have such a big turn up of universities participating. I want to thank all Vice Chancellors across the continent who saw it fit to send their teams," she said.
Wainaina thanked the government through the ministry of Sports for installing an artificial track at the institution's six-lane athletics track which will be used during the athletics competition of the Games.
"The government has supported us in particular making sure that our tartan, six-lane athletics track is completed. As an institution, we are greatful about this and our athletes are really going to enjoy using this facility," said Wainaina.